ERIC Number: ED402022
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996
Reference Count: N/A
Of Labels, Skills and Concepts.
This paper describes the current debate over developmentally appropriate teaching practice. The paper presents the perspective of multicultural educators, who argue that developmentally appropriate practice is biased toward white, middle-class values, and the perspective of special educators, who argue that modification of developmentally appropriate practice is necessary for their populations. This paper suggests that lost in the debate is the fact that developmentally appropriate practice is not fully implemented in early childhood programs because many teachers, parents, and administrators do not understand the difference between the teaching of skills, labels, and concepts, and the relationships between these ideas, in order to know whether their teaching is consistent with developmentally appropriate practice. The paper defines skill as an ability or proficiency acquired through practice, labels as what things are called, and concepts as acquired understandings. The paper discusses several typical early childhood activities in terms of skills, labels, and concepts, including learning shapes, calendar, colors, alphabet, numbers, and cutting on a line. The paper suggests that children should be allowed to work in the most effective way for them to learn, which would include interaction of skills, concepts, and labels learning. The paper warns against turning away from developmentally appropriate practice because practice might then revert to stressing learning of labels and skills at the expense of learning concepts. (Contains 43 references.) (SD)
Descriptors: Color, Competence, Competency Based Education, Comprehension, Concept Formation, Concept Teaching, Cultural Awareness, Cultural Background, Cultural Influences, Cultural Maintenance, Developmentally Appropriate Practices, Early Childhood Education, Instructional Effectiveness, Knowledge Representation, Letters (Alphabet), Numbers, Skill Development, Skills, Special Needs Students, Teaching Methods, Teaching Models, Thinking Skills
Publication Type: Reports - General; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Children's World Learning Centers, Inc., Golden, CO.